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What is the First Aid Treatment for a Human Bite?
Biting is most common among young children when they are curious, angry, or frustrated. Children and their caretakers are frequently at risk for bite wounds. What do we do when we are bitten? Are human bites dangerous? How do we prevent it from getting serious?
Read along and find out the first aid treatment for a human bite and how serious it can get.
How serious can a human bite be?
Human bites that break the skin can become infected. If someone cuts their knuckles on another person's teeth in a fight, this is often considered a human bite. A cut on the knuckles from your teeth, such as from a fall, is regarded as a human bite.
Human bite wounds can be very dangerous due to bacteria transmitted through human saliva. It can cause severe complications, including infection and permanent damage to bones, joints, and tendons. It’s unlikely that a human bite will be fatal, especially if you seek proper medical care. After dog and cat bites, human bites are the next most common bites seen in emergency rooms.
What is the first aid treatment for a human bite?
Animal or human bites can be infected with bacteria or viruses, so it's important to flush out the wound thoroughly to reduce the risk of infection. Here’s how to treat a human bite:
- lrrigate the wound thoroughly with large quantities of water.
- Treat for bleeding if necessary.
- Pat the wound dry and cover it with a sterile low-adherent dressing.
- Seek medical advice. Take or send the casualty to the hospital if the wound is large or deep.
Your doctor may recommend a booster if you haven't had a tetanus shot within five years. In this case, get the booster shot within 48 hours of the injury.
How do you know if a human bite is infected?
Depending on the location of the bite, you might have an injury to a joint or tendon.
Symptoms of infection include:
- Redness, swelling, and heat around the wound
- A wound that discharges pus
- Pain or tenderness on or around the wound
- Fever or chills.
Because of the large number of bacteria in the human mouth, a human bite can easily lead to infection. See a doctor about any bite that breaks the skin.
Seek medical help immediately if you have pain, swelling, or redness in the wound area. Bites near your face, feet, or hands may be more serious. A weakened immune system increases the potential for complications from a human bite.
How long does it take for a human bite to heal?
Most human bites will heal without causing infection or lasting harm to the tissue. Some bites will need surgery to clean the wound and repair the damage. Even minor bites may need to be closed with sutures (stitches). Most scratches, scrapes and other little bites heal fine in 5 to 7 days, and bruises should fade away in 7-14 days.
Depending on the severity of the wound, human bites can take anywhere from seven to ten days to heal. However, some deeper wounds may cause nerve damage which requires ongoing rehabilitation and scarring.
What diseases can be transmitted through a human bite?
Bites can transmit diseases to another person. These may even include the following:
- Infections - Human mouths contain high levels of bacteria, especially the variety that can infect human tissues. About 10 to 20 per cent of human bites become infected, which can become quite nasty.
- Hepatitis B and C - Both viruses, especially Hep B, can come from a bite. Both affect the liver, and this study suggests that anybody who is bitten should be tested for Hepatitis B.
- Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) - It is technically possible, though very unlikely, for somebody to acquire the human immunodeficiency virus by biting or being bitten.
- Herpes - You can get herpes from a bite. This could happen since the herpes simplex virus is carried in saliva.
- Rabies - This may seem like the obvious one. However, though "human-to-human transmission by bite is theoretically possible," it has never been confirmed, according to the World Health Organisation.
Where can I find online training courses for human bite first aid treatment?
The Mandatory Training Group is the leading UK provider of accredited statutory and mandatory training courses for all sectors, including health and social care, education, local government, private companies, charitable and third sector organisations.Alternatively, you can contact our helpful Support Team byclicking hereto tell us more about your online training courses on first aid treatment for a human bite.
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